Reading Questions-Diana George 1/29

“Visual literacy and Writing classes” by Diane George

George tries to examine the place of visual literacy in the composition classrooms because she believes that “some tug of war between words and images or between writing and design can be productive as it brings into relief the multiple dimensions of all forms of communication”(14).

Diane George claims that 21 century students as those who grow up in “an aggressively visual culture” and emphasizes visual analysis in postsecondary, writing pedagogies for the last fifty years after World War II. (21). Questions that are initiated through the reading are: “Are images strategies for getting students to pay attention to detail? Do they mimic the rhetoric of verbal argument? Are they a dumping down of writing instruction making visible to nonverbal students what the verbally gifted can conceptualize”(22)?

George explains different theories regarding writing studies and their interpretation of using visuals in teaching composition: Expressionism and Social Constructionism. She believes that “Visual arguments make a claim or assertion and attempt to sway an audience by offering reasons to accept than claims” (29).

“For students who have grown up in a technology-saturated and an image-rich culture, questions of communication and composition absolutely will include the visual, not as attended the verbal but as complex communication intricately related to the world around them.”(32). Teachers who have been interested in using the visual in writing classes have generally limited their discussion of analysis because there were few ways of doing otherwise.

Using the visual in writing classes have generally limited their discussion to analysis because they were few ways of doing otherwise.

Questions: How can we incorporate the visual rhetoric in first-year compositions classes? Some possible issues are the large size of the classes and students differentiated level of writing skills. In addition, some students don’t have access to computer for creating designs.

This raises the following questions:

  • What would be the guidelines and grading criteria to assess students’ abilities while they are incorporating visuals in their writing?
  • It seems we are using visuals mostly in engaging students to write arguments then how we can adapt visuals in teaching other genres?
  • How can we incorporate more visual topics to other classes across the curriculum?